Since the advent of satellite radio many years ago, predictions around the demise of local radio have been looming. With the spring 2012 release of the BBM audience data (Bureau of Broadcast Measurement) that prediction once again is proven false.
Like fall 2011, the spring survey is volatile with most markets again seeing shake ups in the top 3-4 stations. However, while their position in the market may have changed, the top 4 stations remain the top 4 in each market.
The biggest upset in Halifax is LIVE 105. Unable to hang on to its early success, it loses ground not only against Adults 25-54, but also in its core target of 18-34. Sister station CKHZ, which has been struggling for some time, sees success with its rebranding as Energy 103.5 and new Dance Pop Hits format. Q104 is again the clear market leader, with C100 a strong second. KOOLFM swaps spots with FX 101.9, mainly due to KOOL faltering rather than FX making big gains.
As the only stations in Moncton to show increases in audience, the Newcap stations make a comeback and prove that the fall gains of K945 were indeed a one hit wonder. C103 is back on top with sister station XL-96 in second.
All Saint John stations see losses with the exception of classic rocker Big John. Despite that, sister stations The Wave and Country 94 continue to dominate.
St. John’s continues to mix it up with gains and losses and rankings shifting around. For the first time in a few surveys, there is pretty wide gap between the top 3 Newcap stations and the rest of the market. 99.1 HITS FM continues to gain audience while VOCM remains stable. KROCK may have lost listeners since the last survey, but overall they are up compared to spring 2011.
In Charlottetown, all stations opted to be surveyed which appears to be a wise move on the part of the Newcap stations. KROCK’s rebranding as Hot 105.5 and format change to Top 40/CHR pushed it to the top of the market. Sister station The Ocean remains stable, but both MBS stations take a dramatic tumble.
Local radio continues to offer Atlantic advertisers good value. It provides connections to the community, creates local content of interest and works well for both brand and retail efforts. As always, a deep station list is recommended to offset audience shifts during campaigns.
Source: Spring 2012 BBM, Adults 2554, All Week AQH (000)